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constrained
used in The Scarlet Letter

8 uses
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Definition restricted; or lacking spontaneity

or typically archaic:  to force someone to do something
  • If they would serve their fellowmen, let them do it by making manifest the power and reality of conscience, in constraining them to penitential self-abasement!
    Chapter 10 -- The Leech and his Patient (42% in)
  • Beholding it, Hester was constrained to rush towards the child—to pursue the little elf in the flight which she invariably began—to snatch her to her bosom with a close pressure and earnest kisses—not so much from overflowing love as to assure herself that Pearl was flesh and blood, and not utterly delusive.
    Chapter 6 -- Pearl (34% in)
  • She met his eyes for an instant, but was immediately constrained to give all her attention to the scene now going forward.
    Chapter 8 -- The Elf-child and the Minister (48% in)
  • Here the pale clergyman piled up his library, rich with parchment-bound folios of the Fathers, and the lore of Rabbis, and monkish erudition, of which the Protestant divines, even while they vilified and decried that class of writers, were yet constrained often to avail themselves.
    Chapter 9 -- The Leech (81% in)
  • Then, it is true, the propensity of human nature to tell the very worst of itself, when embodied in the person of another, would constrain them to whisper the black scandal of bygone years.
    Chapter 13 -- Another View of Hester (45% in)
  • The boughs were tossing heavily above their heads; while one solemn old tree groaned dolefully to another, as if telling the sad story of the pair that sat beneath, or constrained to forbode evil to come.
    Chapter 17 -- The Pastor and his Parishioner (68% in)
  • And, as he drew towards the close, a spirit as of prophecy had come upon him, constraining him to its purpose as mightily as the old prophets of Israel were constrained, only with this difference, that, whereas the Jewish seers had denounced judgments and ruin on their country, it was his mission to foretell a high and glorious destiny for the newly gathered people of the Lord.
    Chapter 23 -- The Revelation of the Scarlet Letter (11% in)
  • And, as he drew towards the close, a spirit as of prophecy had come upon him, constraining him to its purpose as mightily as the old prophets of Israel were constrained, only with this difference, that, whereas the Jewish seers had denounced judgments and ruin on their country, it was his mission to foretell a high and glorious destiny for the newly gathered people of the Lord.
    Chapter 23 -- The Revelation of the Scarlet Letter (11% in)

There are no more uses of "constrained" in The Scarlet Letter.

Typical Usage  (best examples)
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